Attractive full tower enclosures are among the more popular choices of modders due to their size and versatility. You can add more custom (or larger all in one systems like the Thermaltake Water 3.0 Ultimate) liquid cooling loops, utilize larger radiator configurations, and add better looking modified components. Full towers with a complete or wider range of features like tool-less or removable bays, cut outs, grommet lined machining, and painted interiors are among the most selected for complex builds. And it looks like Thermaltake has a strong contender in this space, and they call it, the Urban T81!
Our first look at the Thermaltake Urban T81 came by way of our CES 2014 coverage. It was the first time we saw this new industrial design from the company, superior PC DIY functionality, and a much more "grown up" look, with fewer LED and sculpted plastic panels. The Urban series is all business and performance.
Here is the quick break down list of everything you will get inside and outside of the Urban T81...
- Two front 120mm intake Thermaltake fans (included)
- Top 200mm 4pin cooling fan (included)
- Rear 120mm
- Two front removable vented doors
- Front and bottom case filters
- Designed for custom and all in one liquid cooling systems
- Front space for a dual 120mm radiator
- Top space for a up to triple 120mm or 140mm radiators
- All storage cages are removable
- Wire management space and machining
- Tooless hard drive and ROM bays
- Large clean window panel
- Rear tubing ports or external loops
- Removable PSU plate for installation through the back
- SECC light weight steel
- Removable top mesh panel cover for optimal air flow
- Dual door panel design
- PCI screw cover plate
The fans are rated to 1200 RPMs moving about 80 CFM each. Properly configured, the Thermaltake Urban T81 can cool very large systems including those with large power hungry video cards. Naturally, a wind tunnel is best for cooling any system.
Starting from the bezel, the front door sports a gun metal finish. It's self closing which is kind of a nice touch. The door as well as the enclosure all around is very light weight. Behind the door are single 5.25" and 3.5" tab locked bay covers. There's no frame that has to be removed inside so just add your drives and tooless lock them in place. Below these are two removable front fan filters with intake fans behind them. This makes them very easy to keep clean.
The side panels are very clean and warp free. The dual window and drive bay doors are very light weight. The acrylic window is actually quite thin as well. The joints as well as the corners seem to meet up pretty well which enhances that look for people with OCD (like myself). While it’s nice that the doors don't add pounds to the total weight, the window door is quite flexible, and might make some users nervous. Particularly if you like to pull it on and off to tweak and change components.
The back of the chassis is literally the spine of the enclosure. Users will find tube ports and a cap on the 8 PCI slots to help keep things secure. The PSU bay is removable. Simply loosen four lock washer thumb screws and the plate comes off. A bottom removable fan filter extends almost the entire length of the chassis which will keep dust from getting inhaled by the PSU fan. It can be cleaned quite easily.
The top panel is secured by four attachment points that are part of the frame. The mesh is removable mainly for cleaning, but you can't access any of the frame easily for scrubbing. To do that, you'll need to pull on the top panel which takes everything off. This is how you'll install radiators, fans, or whatever custom mod you have in mind.